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Most Brewers on a Fourteener: Tips for Hiking a Fourteener

The River North Brewery crew is doing their annual Fourteener Challenge this upcoming Wednesday, September 8th, and has invited everyone in the craft beer industry to join them in kicking off CBC. Many in the industry will be flocking to Denver to enjoy some of Colorado’s finest craft beers and attend events all around town.

Kicking off a beer week with a fourteener is not for the faint of heart; climbing a fourteener is not the easiest of hikes, even though Mount Bierstadt is rated as an easier fourteener. There are things you should know before you set out to hike a fourteener.

Before the hike, do your best to adjust to altitude. Altitude sickness is real. If you are traveling to a higher altitude and don’t let your body adjust to the new altitude, be aware of the symptoms of altitude sickness. Symptoms include headache and nausea, which will likely go away once you get back down to lower elevation. If you start to experience a headache, nausea or are feeling sick in any other way the best remedies are to stop and rest where you are, take ibuprofen or anti-sickness medicine, drink plenty of water, and eat a potassium-forward snack.

Eat a big, delicious meal and hydrate (with water, not beer!) the night before the hike to prepare yourself. Carb up and fuel that body to get you up the mountain and don’t forget to get enough sleep the night before.

During the hike…

You’re going to want plenty of water. We recommend 2-3 liters to get you through the hike without worrying about running out. Hydration packs make it really easy for you to hydrate through the entirety of the hike. Bringing a comfortable backpack to hold plenty of water, extra clothing, etc., will make you a happy hiker.

Snacks. Bring all of your favorite healthy, fuel inducing snacks! Going up a massive amount of elevation in a short period of time can cause altitude sickness and snacks will help with that. You’ll also be burning a lot of calories, so food is a necessity overall. Think protein bars, energy bars, nuts, chocolate, fruit, foods rich in potassium, snacks that are going to be easy to pack and won’t get smashed in your backpack. Electrolytes will help get up the mountain as well.

Layers of clothing. We can look at the weather forecast, but it won’t really matter as the weather can change drastically in a matter of moments on these mountains. If the weather is looking questionable, we’ll call off the hike. Make sure you have a windbreaker as it will be windy, and something waterproof in case it rains. Extra socks are always key to keep the feet dry. Gloves for your hands if they get cold, as well as a hat! Wear good hiking shoes or boots with good traction and ankle support.

A basic first-aid kit is always good to throw into your backpack. Bandaids, blister ointment, lip balm, ibuprofen, etc., because accidents happen and it’s important to take care of even the smallest of injuries. Don’t forget the sunscreen and bug spray (you never know)!

If you have them, hiking poles are going to be extremely helpful with going up and down the mountain. Slow and steady wins the beer.

You know your body and what you’re capable of. There is no harm and absolutely zero judgement if you start the hike and need to turn around at any point. We’re in it to have fun, and it won’t be any fun if you have to be carried down the mountain or push too hard and get hurt!

Don’t forget to throw some cans of beer in your pack for the top!

We will be gathering at the trailhead at 6:30am for a photo at the trailhead and will take off on the trail at 7am sharp! It is just over an hour drive from Denver to the pass. Here are the links for directions to the trailhead:

We will have hikers of different experience levels with us, so there is no race to the top or any pressure on anybody to complete this fourteener.

Follow the Facebook event to stay up to date with the plans or reach out to for more information!

Please be fully vaccinated or get yourself a negative COVID test before joining us, just to be extra safe.


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